Projects worth ₹12,000 cr. in 5 years
Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Thursday announced a special package for Idukki district, which proposes to implement projects worth ₹12,000 crore over the next five years.
Announcing the package at Kattappana, Mr. Vijayan said the package included various projects aimed at sustainable development of the district. It proposes a development strategy for six basic sectors. These include proposals to increase productivity of farm and animal husbandry sectors, promotion of value-added processing industries, tourism, physical, and social sectors, steps for eradication of poverty and restoration of ecological balance.
Special schemes will be introduced to promote crops, including pepper, nutmeg, ginger, turmeric, clove, cocoa, and coffee. The budget allocation for the agriculture sector in Idukki will be raised to ₹100 crore. A spices park will be started at Muttam. A minimum support price will be fixed for spices in Idukki similar to the one planned for coffee in Wayanad. A carbon neutral project on the lines of a similar one in Wayanad is also in the pipeline. To encourage planting of tree saplings, a tree bank scheme will be implemented.
The package also aims to reduce the use of pesticides. To encourage the tea sector, ₹20 crore will be provided to revive factories in the cooperative sector. To encourage cool season vegetable and fruit farming, a special scheme to plant one crore fruit trees every year in the district is proposed.
A mega food park in 250 acres will be set up. Special projects will be drawn up to achieve ecological balance with focus on reducing soil erosion and water conservation. To ensure tourism development, bamboo cottages will be set up. Subsidy will be provided to construct 1,000 eco-friendly cottages.
A special master plan will be formed for Munnar. The heritage train project will be resumed. Special power distribution systems will be implemented to ensure proper power distribution. The package also proposes special schemes to deal with forest-related issues, including man-animal conflict.